Risotto it’s one of the most famous dish, here in Italy. We use to do that with so many different kind of ingredients: fish, mushroom, vegetables, meat, herbs, fruits and cheeses…! Just find your favourite taste!
In most of the world rice is boiled or steamed, but in a traditional Italian Risotto it must be braised following diligent procedures. Nowhere it is assembled with devotion than in Milan, with the Risotto alla Milanese. A finely chopped onion is glazed in butter and rice is added for the tostatura, the preliminary step that forms a crust to seal in the starch. Then just enough boiling beef stock is added at intervals to keep the rice simmering briskly while being constantly stirred to avoid clotting or sticking as it absorbs flavors and releases starch gradually in an onda or wave that binds the dish. Saffron added with a last ladle of broth gild the rice with color and a certain tang. More butter and grated Parmigiano Cheese are added to the steaming mass before serving, as the mantecatura that enhances the creamy texture. Optional ingredients included marrow, wine, chicken broth or, rarely, a type of salame called cervellato. But whatever the recipe, risotto should never be mushy or runny. Each morsel must remain resistant at the core: al dente, as in pasta. Here in Tuscany we have a traditional recipe of our Risotto, with minced beef and chicken livers: very rustic and tasty, perfect to join it with a glass of Chianti red wine!

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Chiara Tomassetti

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